U.S. News


Locked Out? Ariz. Locksmith Charges Over $400

When a locksmith arrived at an Arizona woman's house, he did exactly what he said he'd do. Then came the bill.
Posted at 12:50 PM, Feb 17, 2015

Adding insult to injury. You’re locked out of your own house, and now the locksmith wants an arm and a leg to get you back in.

“He said it was $426.27,” homeowner Audrey Buckley said.  

That was the voice of Arizona woman Audrey Buckley. She was locked out of her house recently, so she called a locksmith her daughter found advertised on the Internet.

When the locksmith showed up, he did exactly what he said he'd do — get Buckley back in her house. Then came that $400 bill.

Buckley told KNXV: "He said, 'Well, it's a cheap lock. If it were a more expensive lock, it would have cost $600.'"

Once Buckley's daughters caught wind of what their mother paid for the service, they got a hold of the locksmith.

According to her daughter Michaela, "He just screamed and yelled at me and told me that everything they did was fine and not to call back."

For his part, the owner of the business said the price was fair and even pointed out Buckley signed the receipt.

But another local locksmith says the price was way too high for the services rendered and shouldn’t have topped $150.

"For a standard residential job, there's no reason to charge $300 or $400 to get into a door," he said.

Moral of the story? Be prepared to compare prices and shop around, even if you're locked out, as prices can vary.

And if you want to avoid a locksmith altogether, there are other ways to get back into your house or car.

Services from the likes of Lowe's and KeyMe allow users to save digital versions of their keys, then have them created at kiosks.

Coincidentally, Buckley's predicament and unexpected sky-high bill happened to take place in Surprise, Arizona. How fitting.

This video includes images from Paul Cheek / CC BY NC SA 2.0 and Jacqui Brown / CC BY SA 2.0 and music from Kevin MacLeod / CC BY 3.0.